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Rabbis Order Hunt for Stabbers

May 15, 1998

JERUSALEM (AP) _ Rabbis ordered followers Friday to help track down suspects in a series of stabbings of Palestinians, claiming the crimes were done to make the ultra-Orthodox neighborhood look bad.

The latest of the six attacks, on Wednesday, was the first deadly one, killing a 51-year-old Palestinian man. The stabbings started in the neighborhood three months ago.

The ultra-Orthodox Eda Haharedit community does not recognize the state of Israel, arguing a Jewish state can only be established once the Messiah comes. The decision to cooperate with Israeli authorities in the search for suspects was a first.

``This is a provocation by people who are not part of our community,″ posters plastered on the walls of the district declared Friday. ``These people are acting in our neighborhood in order to make us look bad.″

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